Bagel Boss via From Yo to Ya’ll

Today’s guest post comes from the bagel loving girl behind From Yo to Ya’ll. Her blog will make you laugh, and today’s post will have you craving a New York Bagel!

Hey!  I write a little blog entitled From Yo To Ya’ll about my experiences as a recent New York transplant.  I hope you get a chance to check out my blog sometime!

 There’s a lot to love about Virginia and also some things to miss about New York.  When I went to college in Virginia back in the 90’s (pre-internet!!) besides missing my family and friends I missed all of the great food and alt rock music I was used to and that I couldn’t find in SW Virginia.  It made me homesick that I couldn’t satisfy all of my senses with a little bit of NY now and then.  I moved back to New York in 2001 and got my fill of pastrami on rye sandwiches and Oasis and traffic and I’m not so obsessed about NEW YORK FOOD and NEW YORK ENTERTAINMENT as I used to be.  I got my fill and was able to move on.


Now that the world has shrunk, thanks in part to the World Wide Web, I can listen to my favorite alt rock radio stations online no matter where I live and that’s really satisfying.  Also, Roanoke has opened up more restaurants that offer a wider variety of food and that option wasn’t around 15 or so years ago.  The main difficulty I’m still having is locating a decent bagel in my new home state.  Forget about trying to find a bialy.  No one even knows what that is.  It’s sad.


A good bagel is something that you can never stop craving if you grow up in New York.  It’s like a Pavlov’s dog situation ~ say ‘bagel’ and I’ll start to drool.  It’s gross.  For some unknown reason, bagels just don’t taste the same outside of New York.  Is it the water that makes them taste different?  What’s the secret ingredient that no one outside of New York knows about?  WHAT?!  TELL ME!  I’M DROOLING OVER HERE AND NEED TO KNOW!!!!!!!  [it’s sort of like how you just can’t get sweet tea up North; mysterious….]


This is how I handle this disturbing situation: I lug a giant purse (a.k.a. pocketbook, which cracks up my Southern friends) when I fly back and forth to New York to visit and load up the ‘purse’ with bagels and bialys for the trip back.  Seriously load it up.  Like with a dozen, warm, last-minute-gotten bagels and bialys.  The pocketbook is bulging and overflowing with plastic bagness and emanating lovely aromas.  Unfortunately, this always causes me an issue when I pass through the security line at LaGuardia airport.  I get hassled.   Here is a sample conversation with the lovely and cheerful security detail at LGA:


Angry Security Man Who Doesn’t Like His Job or Me: “That plastic bag filled with food isn’t going to be allowed on your plane.  That’s like having a second carry-on.  You can’t do that.  Why do you have that?”


Me Looking Irritated: “I’m going to eat them ALL at the gate before I board.”


For some reason, this tactic has worked. I can’t understand it.  Needless to say, when I board the plane no one cares.  Except when you have to sit on the tarmac for three hours because there is a problem with the landing gear and the entire cabin smells like a bagel and everyone is cranky because they don’t have one.  I just chew one slowly and don’t look at anyone all whilst praying that I don’t die from faulty landing gear.


Where do I get these bagels?  Bagel Boss in Hicksville ~ yes, that’s the name of the town.  Bagel Boss is the absolutely most fantastic bagel place in all the world, in my opinion.  It’s been in business since the 70’s and is open 24 hours a day except on major Jewish holidays.  Their website used to have an option for you to order and mail bagels anywhere in the United States.  My co-worker and I tried to do this and a dozen bagels would have cost $80 to mail because Bagel Boss wanted to overnight them.  Hilarious.  Um, not doing that.  I’m not that crazy.  I’ll stick with the pocketbook smuggling operation.
I have mailed bagels to Virginia before using the U.S. Postal Service which is a lot cheaper than whatever method Bagel Boss was using.  I was in a Long Island post office branch and the guy helping me suggested that I use 3-day shipping to save money.  “But, I have bagels in this box”, I said.  “Ohhhhh, that’s different!  Yes, they are worth the overnight cost.  I’ve done that for my sister in North Carolina.”  He got it.  Love it.

New Event Announcements

Hi all! Our event page is filling up with new Fall events!


If you’re in Richmond this weekend, be sure to stop by the Heidi Story fall fashion show! Saturday, September 22nd at 2:30 pm at Can Can. It is going to be absolutely fabulous! There is no need to make reservations if you are just coming to watch, but if you were planning to have lunch and watch the show, call Can Can and say it is for the fashion show. You can even see our fellow blogger Stephanie strut her stuff down the run way 😉



Also, if you’re in the Roanoke area on Saturday, October 6th, Buchanan is holding its annual arts, crafts, and bluegrass festival! For all the details,  Click Here!


And last but not least, it’s not too late to sign up for the Richmond 8K/Half Marathon/Marathon on Saturday, November 10th! There will be some other Virginia Bloggers running, so stay tuned for some running meet ups!


Have an event to submit? Shoot us an e-mail at

5 Tips for New Runners via Neon Blonde Runner

Greetings to my fellow Virginia friends!!  My name is Katherine and I’m a 3 time marathon runner with a personal best time of 3:26.  I’ve had a fast and furious love affair with running and I am super excited to report that I just registered for my first Boston Marathon in spring 2013.  I blog about my running adventures, travels, and life in Richmond Virginia over at Neon Blonde Runner.

The goal of my blog is to inspire others to dream big and shoot for the stars with their goals.  I just ran my first road race in 2010 and at that time I would have never dreamed about qualifying for the Boston Marathon, but you never know what you’re capable of until you try.  So that’s why I want to give each of you 5 simple tips for getting you started with running…so that you can take off, make it your own and discover what you’re capable of too.

You may recognize me from the October 2012 issue of Outside Magazine! My photo was featured in the article that named Richmond the Best River Town in the nation



5 Simple Tips for New Runners

1)  When you’re starting out, don’t focus on speed.  Instead, just run based on time—for example, decide that you’re going to spend 20 minutes jogging and just set out and relax.  Focus on enjoying yourself and getting a “feel” for it.  I didn’t start to pay attention to speed or pace until I’d been casually jogging for almost a year.  This will take the pressure off of it all.  This is your “me” time, your time to clear you head.  You can gradually increase the length of your runs when you feel comfortable with what you’re already doing.

Once you get into it, running can feel as relaxing as a siesta on the beach


2)  Run with a buddy or a group!  You’d be surprised at how much this makes a difference.  If you know that you’re going to meet someone for a jog, it’ll be much easier to head out the door.

Running with Tappan at the Color Me Rad 5K


3)  Remember that the hardest part of running is getting out the door.  Not many people get super excited before heading out for a jog…but once you get started, the feeling is pretty darn incredible and you won’t regret it.  Schedule a time to go running ahead of time and stick with it—I prefer running before work, otherwise it just will NOT get done.

4)  Go to a running store to get fitted for a pair of shoes.  Running in the right shoes is super important and can help prevent any injuries!  Sources recommend that you replace your shoes ever 200-300 miles.

5)  Track your progress and stick with it for at least a month before you decide to stop running.  Keep a little calendar where you write down how long you ran each day.  Or you can record your progress in an online running diary, such as Daily Mile or the runner’s world training log.  If you stick with it for a month and still don’t enjoy running, then maybe running’s just not your thing…but I doubt that will be the case because you’ll notice such incredible changes in your life, both mentally and physically.

Running is simple, pure, and has added so much joy to my life.  Its benefits will seep into all other parts of your life.

So give it a try!  I am always happy to try to pull new converts along with me!  So if you live in Richmond, let me know and I’ll tell you about some great local running groups.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions:

-e-mail- NeonBlondeRunner @ gmail . com

-twitter- NeonRunnerKat

-Instagram @NeonBlondeRunner

Are you a runner and have some tips to add?  Please let us know in the comments below!


Tasting: Potter’s Craft Cider

If you are a single twenty-something gal, walking through Whole Foods on a brilliant Saturday afternoon, and two very dapper young gentlemen offer you a drink, more than likely you will happily accept the libation.

[In fact, even you weren’t single, or twenty-something, but just a female of drinking age, it would be hard to turn down a glass of anything from two charming cider makers.]

Affable and endearing, Daniel Potter and Tim Edmond not only have the personality to sell their product, they have a product that truly needs no PR. One sip of Potter’s Craft Cider and you’ll know you aren’t in woodchuck territory anymore.

After leaving behind an engineering career in North Carolina, Daniel Potter began work on a farm outside of the Richmond area. It was while transporting apples to local markets that his collegiate passion for homebrew sparked a plan to make a grown-up apple juice that takes what you think you know about hard ciders and flips it on its idiomatic head. He found a business partner in Tim, and together the two have taken the science of microbrew and turned it into an apple-based art form.

Locally sourced from orchards in the Blue Ridge, Potter’s Farmhouse Dry is brewed from fresh cider apples, including Pippin and Winesap. Bottle by hand, and sold for around $10 a bottle (and available on tap) throughout the Charlottesville–and now Richmond—area, Potter’s Craft Cider is a crisp, slightly sweet cider, seasonally perfect for the approaching fall and its demands for apples in any form.

Oh, and for those of us who choose our drinks by the label, the hand-drawn logo is intriguingly irresistible. [And made for mountainside glamour shots. ]

For a full list of retail locations, check out the company website. Find up-to-date tasting information by following Potter’s Cider on twitter and facebook.

Bests Around The State via My Life, Laughs, & Love

Photo Credit Here (she’s from NOVA!)
Hey fellow Virginia Bloggers (or future residents of VA, or visitors of VA!), I’m Christina and I blog over at My Life, Laughs, & Love.  My blog is a little rambling account of my life and helps me to avoid being an adult from time to time.  I found the VA is for Bloggers through another Stafford, VA blogger & couldn’t have been happier I did – how awesome is it that we have a “base” to refer back to for events & happenings in this beautiful state!? 
So anyhow, let’s get down to the business.
I don’t know about you, but the way to my heart is food. 
So is the way to Nick’s heart (he’s my fiancé).
And the hearts’ of our family members.
And everyone else that I know.
So basically, if you can’t tell this post is going to incorporate lots of info. about food!
When we moved to VA we went through a little break-up with delicious cuisine found in the smaller town Nick grew up in & have since been on the hunt for good food & drink in the area.  Here’s what we’ve found:
Best beer selectionCapital Ale House!  Capital Ale is all throughout VA with locations in Fredericksburg, Richmond, Midlothian, & Harrisonburg & offers an impeccable variety of beers…  They literally have 62 beers on draught and 300 choices in bottled beer.  Can you say beer heaven!?  They also have an ice-lined bar to keep your drink chilled.  Genius.  If this doesn’t get you excited, also know that in Fredericksburg they host Octoberfest in late September & shut down the streets of downtown Fred for drinking, music, & delicious German food.  This year it’ll be held on September 29th & I will certainly be there!
Best ice cream:  Let me just say, I’ve had some good ice cream in my day, but when Nick’s family & I found Wally’s homemade ice cream in downtown Fredericksburg after a day of antiquing we were ecstatic.  I highly recommend the mint chocolate chip (my favorite!), and Nick recommends the death by chocolate.  Both delish!
Best grocery store:  If you have never stepped foot into a Wegmans – get your buns in the car and get to one ASAP!  It is the Mecca of grocery stores.  They have literally everything & anything and it is not only fairly priced, but is always fresh & delicious!  We’ll find ourselves at their restaurant (tip-free might I add!) and/or at their variety of buffets/food bars before grocery shopping (or just as an excuse to not cook dinner).  Love Love Love our Weggies!
Best appetizer/drink specials:  If you’re in the area around mid afternoon/early evening head to Bravo! for amazing food specials.  Y’all, $3.95 bar bites AND $5 drink specials?  Yes.  Please.  Not to mention the food portions at the bar are great and the food itself is yummy!  I wouldn’t recommend eating in the main dining area unless you’re willing to pay up, but this bar deal is unbeatable!  
Best AmericanFirebirds.  Oh my most delicious wood grilled food ever.  I have literally never had anything off of their menu that I didn’t eat every last bite of it’s that good (only after consuming their hot bread & side salad mmm).  Not to mention such a classy ambiance with the openly viewed grill and wine bottle wall!  Love.  We went last year for Nick’s b-day and might have to get back there for this years’!  
Best fun with your food:  If you like to play trivia and enjoy a good deal, get to F.W. Sullivans.  For Real.  Trivia is every Monday at 8pm and food specials are M-F (hello $5 appetizers!).  I recommend the hummus – it comes with a full spread including pita breads, kalamata olives, pepperoncinis, feta cheese, cucumbers, and tomatoes.  For $5 Sullivan’s makes me one happy lady :)  Orrrr you can get there F/S nights for darts & dancing. Take your pick.

Sure there are plenty of other fun things around the area, but if you’re anything like us, your world revolves around your next meal.  Hopefully you’ll take our advice and find yourself stopping off anywhere aforementioned & enjoy it as much as we do!  And be sure to come by my blog to say hi + get to know me just a little more!  

Thanks again for reading
xx, Christina 

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